Story by Rich Donnell,
We appear to be ending 2010 about like we ended 2009—stuck in the housing mud. But as bad as it was economically, it wasn’t boring. Here’s a recap:
- Wood pellet plants and woody biomass power plants continued to be announced left and right, including the largest wood pellet plant in the world in Waycross, Ga., operating as Georgia Biomass and owned by Germany’s RWE Innogy. The plant broke ground in March.
- The federal government’s Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) for renewable energy projects was temporarily suspended. Several forest products groups took the position that BCAP provided an unfair subsidy program that could have disastrous consequences on the traditional wood supply chain.
- Timber Processing named Steve Singleton, General Manager of Canfor-New South at Camden, SC, as the magazine’s 22nd annual Man of the Year.
- Simonds Interational purchased major cutting tools manufacturer and supplier Pacific/Hoe.
- Henry W. Culp, Jr., president of H.W. Culp Lumber, New London, NC, died at age 88.
- Collins Companies started up a new hardwood sawmill at Boardman, Ore., sawing hybrid poplar stock called Pacific Albus.
- Domtar sold its forest products business, including five sawmills, to EACOM Timber of Montreal.
- Lumber exports to China from Canada continued to skyrocket.
- Emerald Forest Products started up a new sawmill in Emmett, Id.
- Dixon Lumber restarted its southern yellow pine sawmill in Eufaula, Ala., as did Harrigan Lumber in Monroeville, Ala.
- Called the largest wood pellet plant in the world when it started up in 2008, Dixie Pellets in Selma, Ala. was sold in bankruptcy to Zilkha Biomass Energy.
- Mason County Forest Products sold its two sawmills in Washington to Simpson Lumber.
- Rex Lumber began renovation at its third sawmill in the South, the former Columbus Lumber mill in Brookhaven, Miss.
- EPA’s proposed Boiler Maximum Achievable Control Technology rules didn’t sit well with companies still immersed in a recession.
- The U.S.-Canada softwood lumber issue heated up again, with U.S. lumber interests saying certain British Columbia stumpage practices resulted in dramatically reduced stumpage costs,
- The Biomass Crop Assistance Program was re-released, and this time emphasized that sawdust sold from sawmills to bioenergy plants was not eligible for the program’s matching payment plan.
- Georgia-Pacific teamed with the Dogwood Alliance and the Natural Resources Defense Council (two long-time “enemies” of the forest products industry) in announcing it will not cut timber on certain eco-sensitive forested areas in the Mid-Atlantic, nor purchase pine from pine plantations recently converted from hardwood forests.
- With this issue, Timber Processing magazine completed its 35th year of publication.